CityU survey reveals Pan-Chinese New Word Rosters in 2007

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The Language Information Sciences Research Centre (LISRC) of City University of Hong Kong (CityU) has released its 2007 Pan-Chinese New Word Rosters and highlighted five new words which were found in Beijing, Hong Kong, Shanghai and Taipei, among thousands first making their appearance in the Chinese language last year. They are:


1. 四要一沒有 Four Imperatives and One Non-issue (Four Wants and One Without) - Chen Shui-Bian’s latest policy on what his government would follow with respect to the claims on Taiwan’s political status;

2. 入聯公投 UN Vote - the referendum on Taiwan’s application for UN membership under Taiwan rather than ROC;

3. 和諧號 CRH (China Railway High-speed) Trains - the designation for new high-speed trains running in China, marking the sixth “speed-up” of China’s railways and was given a “harmonious” label;

4. 次按風暴(次貸)Subprime Mortgage Crisis - the financial crisis in USA with global impact; and

5. 防衛相 Defence Minister - the head of the Ministry of Defence of Japan, upgraded from the former Defence Agency.


According to Professor Benjamin T’sou Ka-yin, Director of LISRC, “these were the most representative and commonly found terms in the Chinese newspapers of Beijing, Hong Kong, Shanghai and Taipei, according to the rigorous and regular survey of Chinese newspapers conducted by the Language Information Sciences Research Centre; and while the use of words, especially new words, reflects societal concerns, they indicate that cross-strait affairs remain the focus among various Chinese speech communities in the year 2007.”


There are separate new word rosters for each of the four communities. Further details may be obtained from


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